2 Oklahoma State Athletes Injured In Serious, Fiery Car Crash

By Dani Medina

January 25, 2022

Photo: Getty Images

Two Oklahoma State student athletes were injured in a serious and fiery car crash Monday night.

The students, wrestler AJ Ferrari and track athlete Isai Rodriguez, are now listed in fair condition after being transported by helicopter to the hospital, according to ESPN.

At around 8 p.m. Monday, Ferrari was driving his 2019 Dodge Durango on Highway 33 near Perkins, Oklahoma, with Rodriguez as a passenger, according to ESPN and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. The university said Rodriguez and Ferrari were returning to Stillwater after attending a youth wrestling practice in Cushing.

Ferrari "attempted to pass three vehicles while cresting a hill," then his car hit a driver in oncoming traffic and the car overturned several times before stopping in a ditch. The cause of the crash was listed as "passing in a no-passing zone."

The driver of the oncoming vehicle, Valenda McKee, 56, was not injured. All drivers were wearing seatbelts, officials said.

Ferrari was transported to a hospital in Oklahoma City and Rodriguez was transported to a hospital in Stillwater. Both were listed in fair condition and the university said neither suffered life-threatening injuries. Rodriguez suffered internal, arm, leg and head injuries. Ferrari's father said his son had no broken bones, but "has fluid in his lungs that is affecting his oxygen levels and some bad bruising with some internal bleeding."

Coincidentally, Oklahoma State football offensive coordinator Kasey Dunn witnessed the crash and was able to pull Ferrari out of the vehicle through a window when the car caught on fire, according to ESPN.

Ferrari is the 2020-21 NCAA Champion in the 197-pound weight class. He recently signed an NIL deal with the WWE's "Next In Line" program, according to ESPN. Rodriguez is a multiple-time NCAA All-American in cross country.

Oklahoma State wrestling coach John Smith and track and field director Dave Smith are scheduled to speak with the media at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to Tulsa World reporter Eli Lederman.

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